Chennai Visit- Day 1 – December 18, 2015

‘Love’ walked this earth on two feet, extending His compassion to every soul. Standing tall and shining bright, Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba’s grace is incomprehensible and His mercy, unfathomable! For, how else can we describe this phenomena, where He touched millions around the world, through various facets of His mission in the human form. Of course, God showers His infinite compassion and incomparable love without any discrimination.

What we witnessed in Chennai was an outcome of the infinite grace and compassion! Bhagawan had remarked, “How can can I go empty handed during their troubled times? I want to go and meet them, and start the rehabilitation work and give them hope!” Bhagawan Sri Sathya Sai Baba, the embodiment of ‘Love’ visited Chennai to flag-off the third round of relief supplies distribution, from S B Mahal Kalyana Mandapam, Selaiyur, Tambaram on Friday, December 18, 2015.

The entourage reached Chennai a little before noon and Bhagawan was welcomed with the traditional Purna Kumbham on arrival at the Kalyana Mantapam, which was an hour’s drive from the Cennai airport. Emotionally charged, the love exuding from everyone gathered, over 200, was rather discernible!

As soon as Bhagawan along with the dignitaries ascended the stage and took their seats, Veda chanting by the ladies, which included alumnae from the Anantapur Campus, commenced.

Sri B N Narasimha Murthy was the first speaker and spoke extensively on acts of compassion. He said it was indeed a great fortune of the family who built this Kalyana Mandapam (wedding hall), as it was inaugurated in the best way possible, hosting the Lord of the Universe on day one! He spoke about his first encounter with Bhagawan, and reminded everyone that His love and compassion is always constant. He vividly narrated the first interaction of Sri C Sreenivas, Chairman of the Sri Sathya Sai Health and Education Trust, and one of the most ardent and dedicated devotees of Bhagawan.

Sri Narasimha Murthy spoke about the Sri Sathya Sai Sanjeevani Hospital which was inaugurated in November 2012, in the heart of the India, Naya Raipur in Chhattisgarh, as the beacon of light, serving children with heart ailments completely free of charge. When Bhagawan had commanded him to build the hospital, he gave up his home and hearth in Bangalore, to mid to Naya Raipur. He reminded everyone to develop divine compassion in our hearts, as the Lord of the Universe has come on a mission of compassion! He also spoke about the youth and devotees who have travelled from Bangalore, to participate in the Chennai relief operations. An act of fellowship, fraternity and brotherhood! It was indeed very endearing to see everyone putting in their very best, with only one thought, ‘Brotherhood of Man and oFatherhood of God.’

The inspirational talk was followed by a short speech in Tamil by Sri Kalyanaraman, who has been an active Seva volunteer for many years now. His passionate talk, straight from the heart, touched everyone. He repeatedly thanked Bhagawan for this wonderful opportunity of welcoming Him to Chennai and to be able bask in His Divine Love! He said he had a small prayer in his heart, that the Lord should visit Chennai. He said, “Little did we realise that He would come and stay for three days! It is our biggest fortune and we are all singularly blessed.” He also shared with everyone that as soon as the local leader got the information of Bhagawan’s visit, He has offered 50 cents of land (half acre) at His Lotus Feet, for the purpose of humanitarian service for the people of Chennai!

The much awaited nectarine message of Bhagawan followed.  He started by extolling the virtues of ‘Paropakara’ or service to others,  through a poem. “Para means ‘that’. Upa means ‘nearness’. Kara means ‘to do’. Any act which makes us closer to God, is Paropakara.

Narasimha Murthy knows that Swami gets an invitation from devotees all around the world. But,  Swami chooses to go to only to certain places. Where there is ‘Paropakara’ happening, Swami will go there!”

The ever benevolent Master then spoke of the importance of Unity, by giving the example of how a single finger cannot do anything. But when five fingers join there is Unity. With Unity comes Purity. With Purity comes Divinity. He said, “When Swami told we must help the poor in and around Chennai, everyone came forward to help. Today, volunteers have come from Bangalore, Chennai, Hyderabad and other places together in a united way. Therefore, this Unity has brought Purity. Where there is Purity, there is Divinity. Therefore, Swami has come today! Because of Unity and Selflessness, Swami is here! This is only the beginning. There is lots to happen here in Chennai. I have promised a lot to the people.” He gave a clarion call to the volunteers saying “I am ready. You should be ready too! With My sankalpa and your efforts, much can be achieved.”

Swami then referred to the selfless act of the local leader, who had offered the substantial parcel of land in Chennai city to Swami. Swami said He will start the ‘Sevamrutham Ashram’ on this land. It will start with a bhajan hall, and a day clinic. He said His doctors, some of whom were there that afternoon, would plan the medical service activities at the Ashram. Free medical care will be offered at the day clinic. “In the future there will be many large projects in and around Chennai. Poor Kalyanaraman was looking after a small temple, and was asked to step down as a caretaker. Now I am giving Him a big temple to look after, the Ashram!  I am very happy with the offering and I accept it for the sake of the society,” He said.  Bhagawan once again reiterated that this was but just the beginning!

Swami brought His discourse to an end saying it was a day of action and not talk. In His own inimitable way, and in a lighter vein, He said “In Tamil Nadu, a serving of curd rice indicates the end of the meal. Similarly, Swami’s discourse is taken as the end of the proceedings! But today the work has just begun! The relief work will begin after lunch.”

Thereafter, the Lord gave a sneak preview into the incredible event that awaited all on Sunday, December 20. He said He will announce a housing project upon the arrival of Sri Kondala Rao (an ardent devotee of Swami for many decades) who was involved in the housing projects in Orissa . The housing project – Sri Sathya  Sai Seva Grama – will be a gift from the most compassionate divine mother of the universe, Sai Ma to the rain ravaged city of Chennai! Revealing further details of this divine project, Swami said, it will initially commence with 100 houses, and will be an Ideal Village with a community center, pure drinking water facilities and other features. He repeated His clarion call to all gathered, by reminding them that as long as they remained selfless, nothing could stop His will!

Swami then blessed all the volunteers saying His blessing are with them and to ensure that the calamity affected people did not feel anymore pain, and to tell them that that Swami was now here to soothe their pain!

Referring to the brand new Kalyana Mantapam, which was having the good fortune of hosting the Lord on its opening day and serving as the nerve center for the relief operations, Swami said the Kalyana Mantapam was starting with the work of Loka Kalyana!

After a sumptuous lunch, Bhagawan flagged-off the trucks, packed with supplies with all the volunteers. Over 1,000 families in the five villages of Thangal, Sembakam, Madhurapakam, Mudichur and Rajakilapakam were the beneficiaries. A team of volunteer doctors also accompanied the trucks to every location and administered essential medicines to the villagers. It was indeed a very endearing sight to see the smiles of their faces, probably regained after their horrific experiences. Who else, but God can do this?